Elaine Watts
Watercolourist and Printmaker


(posted on 22 Jan 2020)

As I post from sunny Australia, I am thinking about the decade to come. Will it be another "Roaring Twenties"?  Who will still be here at the change of the next decade, and who will we be missing? These are things I sometimes think about as I get older. As you may know from previous years, I have a theme that I work from for the year and for 2020 I have landed upon "Designing the Future".

We have just got the approval to move ahead with our long-awaited subdivision and build a smaller house (and studio) that we hope will serve us for the next 30 years (or more? Best not to take too much for granted!)  The house design has been ready for ages while we paid for the extensive work and inspections required to get a lot registered. Hopefully the next approval stage won't be so lengthy!

With designing in mind I registered for a week-long Silversmithing and Jewellry design class--my first foray into this kind of three dimensional work. I found it very exacting and precise (not my forte, you might know!) But with a lot of help from the tutors and a more skilled classmate I managed to complete these beautiful pieces.

I think I may go back again next year to improve my skills--my big accomplishment by Day 2 was to be able to turn on and adjust the torch, safely and unsupervised (I kid you not!) There were so many tools, techniques and things to learn about that I needed to be put back to simpler work (ie the ring without the stone), which I preferred anyway!

Back to my stronger suit--painting and printmaking! Last year I was inspired by a collography course with UK artist Sarah Ross Thompson, and her gorgeous work, and upon returning to Canada completed a number of collographs. As I age I find my body and mind show more signs of weakness but hopefully this is offset by increasing artistic skill and vision!

Here are a few collographs I am pleased with.

Entitled "FLICK OFF", I made this as a demo for the Federation of Canadian Artists that I joined in 2019. Cards are available if you have a special someone you want to send it to 😉!


I was delighted to have my best year ever for sales at my Coquitlam Christmas sale, and will be there again in 2020. I will again participate locally in the Ryga Festival--my piece below included related quotes from many of his works as a response to my designated inspirational cue titled "The Protector".

I will be planning (Designing and executing!) some larger works as I have been selected for a 4 month show on the large and long wall of our local credit union starting in September. This is a great opportunity and I have some time, and now some ideas, about subject matter and medium.

As usual, I continue to love painting Wednesday night's with the life drawing artists at Shatford Centre in Penticton.  What a great bunch of people!

It's not all nudes--on nights when the model doesn't show the artists draw one another--here's one of my friends striking a pose for me. I do love my ink and watercolour!

Well, that's where I've gotten to in designing my near and long term future. I must keep in mind that if I intend to last another 30+ years that I need to keep designing my body and mind to last that long. What about you--any designs have you got for your future, and how do they play out?